A buy-out deal for the European branch of ESPN America could be weeks away, with Setanta, Chellomedia and Eurosport interested.
According to the sports business news service TV Sports Markets, the three parties are interested in acquiring ESPN America.
Last February, the BT Group acquired ESPN’s UK and Ireland TV business. At the time, the broadcaster said that separate from the agreement with BT, ESPN is proposing the wind down of ESPN Classic throughout the EMEA region and the non-UK ESPN America TV businesses.
ESPN earlier said that broadcast to Europe and the Middle East of its channels would end on July 31, but the new reports suggest that a deal might be under way to sell the channels. However, if the channels will not be sold, the various sports rights to MLB, NFL and other major US sports, could be sold to individual broadcasters in the region.
ESPN America and ESPN America HD feature coverage of the NFL, NHL, MLB and NCAA Football and Basketball across Europe, available to 19 million homes in more than 40 countries.
ESPN Classic now delivers five regionalised networks across the region, including one for the UK (as well as pan-European, French, Italian and Middle Eastern networks). Together they reach more than 22 million homes in more than 40 countries.